THE CEREBELLAR ROLE IN COGNITION AND BEHAVIOR AS ASSESSED BY ADVANCED NEUROIMAGING TECHNIQUES

This research line aims to investigate the cerebro-cerebellar interactions in patients presenting with cerebellar pathologies by means of advanced neuroimaging techniques such as diffusion-based tractography and resting state functional MRI. The experimental paradigm involves a magnetic resonance imaging protocol at 3T to compare structural and functional patterns of cerebello-cortical circuits between patients and healthy subjects and to explore the impact of the cerebellar damage on cognitive and emotional functions. Furthermore, this experimental protocol is also carried out in patients affected by autistic spectrum disorders, in order to investigate structural and functional features of the cerebro-cerebellar networks that may account for specific aspects of the autistic disorders.